A divorce can have many affects on children. They often irrationally blame themselves for their parents’ troubles. Although it is rarely their fault, several studies have shown that this self blame is a common reaction when faced with this situation. They feel the stress of the separation so it can disrupt their lives, including their schooling if they are constantly distracted by events at home. Most children are upset when their parents are going through a divorce, especially when they don’t understand the reasons for it. All the changes happening in their lives can make them insecure. They don’t always know what the future has in store; they may be wondering which parent they will live with, and how often they will see their other parent. They may also worry that they will not be wanted by either. The whole episode can be very confusing and stressful; especially for children old enough to understand what is happening, but not old enough to really understand why.
Throughout a divorce process there are difficulties to get through, for both parents and children. Family law can be complex, with family law solicitors fighting it out on behalf of their clients. It can therefore be a battle between the two parents. Children may suddenly see what they used to consider a team as being opponent, and this will further hit home the negative thoughts they may be having. It is much better for children if the divorce process is dealt with amicably.
Some say that a divorce can never be a positive thing, but others argue that in some families divorce can be the best solution, including for children. If they are constantly arguing this does children no good anyway, so it may be better to separate. It can be the better of two evils rather than being bought up in an unhappy household.
A divorce is always going to cause some stress and unease but it doesn’t have to be as difficult as it can be. If parents can still get along as best as possible, especially in front of children, then it can be significantly easier, and children won’t be as adversely affected. Parents shouldn’t blame each other in front of children, either while going through the separation process or after it has gone through.
After a divorce things will be different, but if dealt with well children can get into a new routine relatively quickly. Where possible both parents should be involved in their upbringing, and children should see them both regularly. Parents should not talk about the other parent in negative language as this will only cause upset.
Andrew Marshall © FLIP’s team of expert Family Law Solicitors serve clients who want an ethical approach to their divorce and separation to minimise damage and move on with their lives.